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Nerds Without Pants   

Nerds Without Pants Episode 136: Ye Olde Englishe

Verily, thou musteth playeth Octopathen Travelereth.

Hey, we’re back right away, so I guess the hiatus is really over. Huzzah! On this episode of Nerds Without Pants, it’s another all Consumption Junction edition with Julian and Patrick. But tune in next time for the return of Stage Select, as well as a special guest!

We kick things off with Julian making the podcast rounds. Be sure to check out The Shaded Pixels Podcast and The Arcade Memories Podcast, and let them know NWP sent ya! That leads into another lengthy discussion about arcades, and Julian’s dream business. After that, Julian likes but not loves Octopath Traveler, Patrick has a special deal for NWP listeners interested in blockchain development, and Julian is disappointed in his Nintendo Switch. Patrick bought some stuff on the PlayStation Summer Sale, which leads to a talk about the devaluation of video games. We round things out with some comic book talk, and Julian’s trip to the Distant Worlds: Final Fantasy concert.



THE RETURN OF STAGE SELECT! What are your top 3 biggest pet peeves in video games?

Submit your comments by 8:30 Central time on August 9th to have them read on air!



Octopath Traveler- Main Theme

Final Fantasy XIV- Torn From the Heavens

Final Fantasy IV- Battle With the Four Fiends

Final Fantasy XV- Apocalypsis Noctis




08/01/2018 at 09:23 PM

Stage Select:

1. Tutorial levels, especially unskippable ones. I know how to walk and how to press A to jump. I should not have to demonstrate it to the satisfaction of the game to proceed. This isn't school. If you must have tutorial levels, make them a selectable option on the main menu. Keep them out of the game itself.

2. Stealth missions, especially in games that aren't really made to handle stealth, and most especially when discovery results in an instant Game Over or mission failure.

3. Bad voice acting, whether it's the hyperactive voice-acting you see in a lot of Japanese games, or the flat, doped-out-on-Haldol delivery you hear in Western games. And as a related topic, repetitive voice clips.


08/01/2018 at 11:44 PM

Stage Select: (It feels good to type that again)

I'd like to start this by saying, I actually like the game that I'm going to use a lot in my examples. It's just a more recent game that seems to check a lot of my pet peeve boxes. Detroit: Become Human is a decent game that I actually enjoyed despite some weird writing that I could take or leave, and I SWEAR I'm not trying to throw it under the bus. Go play Detroit kids. It's fine. (That being said, I wish the game was just a Connor and Hank buddy cop story about solvin' robo crimes. Woulda been great!)

3. Unnecessary jump scares in non-horror games. This one probably only applies to me, but I do not like jump scares, at all. When you put them in a horror game, that's fine, because I know it's a horror game and I'm not going to play it. When you sneak it into a game where I'm not expecting it though, I am really not a fan. I've told my Batman: Arkham Knight story before where I just stopped playing the game after it did this to me (In my opinion) too many times. It makes me not want to keep pushing your narrative forward because now I have to worry about this happening to me. And I know, I KNOW, this is just me and the rest of the world doesn't care about this, but I really hate it. Stop sending screaming robo children (Or whatever that was) at me David Cage. I am a coward.

2. Unclear dialogue choices. When you're making a dialogue driven game, where I'm making choices that are actually going to matter, please show me a more clear description of what my character is going to say. This has gone on for far too long and it absolutely drives me crazy. Fallout 4 did this, and it was one of the first things I modded out, and most recently Detroit did this. Detroit just gives you "emotions" to choose from and you take your best guess as to which one you think is the right choice. It drove me crazy the entire game, and resulted in me saying some stuff I definitely would not have said had I known what the actual dialogue was. I understood what they were going for because they wanted you to react more naturally in the conversation, but I am making choices that are literally life or death, so just give me a second and show me my options. There has to be a better way for all games to handle this, and I hope developers find the solution soon.

1. Motion controls. Please stop this... Please? I hate motion controls. Can't I just be lazy and lay on my couch and use my thumb to aim the thing? Why for you make me move my arms, and look like I'm stupid Nintendo? Why for you put in the quick time events that I fail because they no trigger right David Cage? Why for you make the baby cry in my face because I can't figure out the correct rocking motion Yakuza 6? I just wish these would go away. It was a fun gimmick for a while but it's one I'm actively sick of. I realize this is the entire point of VR, and incoming hot take, VR kinda sucks. If all games in the future become VR "experiences" I'm officially quitting gaming and becoming the grumpy old man who tells the kids about how gaming was back in his day. I am not about the motion control life.

Episode comment!

I completely forgot to comment on the last episode, but once again, it is really good that you guys are back. Whoever the listener is that said Stage Select is his favorite segment in podcasting is very much right. It's probably mine too, so I'm VERY happy it's back. Also please accept my apologies for using Detroit as an example so much in my stage select, I really did like the game, it just had so many good examples of things I'm not a fan of in games overall. Hopefully my intro thing explains this well enough, I really do think people should play it as it's a prime example of how a narrative game should play out and choices actually matter. (Despite having a really awful twist and some things that I still can't make any sense of.)

Really enjoyed hearing about Octopath too! I've been playing it a lot recently, and what I mean by a lot is, I've put a good 100 plus hours into it. Every critism of it I've heard is very fair, as I don't think story is one of it's stronger points. Don't get me wrong, there are some parts of the different character's stories I really liked, so definitely give the game a few chapters for the characters to grow on you, but as far as a narrative that ties them all together, let me just say without spoiling too much, there is one there, but it's hidden in the post game content. It was a really weird way to tie it all together and I honestly can say, I wasn't a big fan of that. I honestly kept playing because the battle system was super fun and continued to get better as more options open up. It actually reminds me a lot of Final Fantasy Tactics in some of the ways you can kind of break the game. It seems they designed it to be more of a portable RPG than anything else, which works sometimes, and works against it at others. Love it, but it definitely has it's problems. I do hope it gets a sequel because I can only imagine what they would go for in a future installment. Give me this battle system with a great overarching narrative and I would be super into it. Hope that's what happens, but time will tell. (And hot damn that soundtrack is fire!)

Always great to listen to you gents and as always, keep up the good work!

Julian Titus Senior Editor

08/05/2018 at 12:04 AM

Thanks man, it's good to be back!

I put Octopath Traveller down. Based on things people have told me since the episode went live I don't think it's what I want to be playing right now. (You can't switch out your first character? What?!) So I started The Witcher 3 for the fourth time and it finally clicked with me. I'm ten hours in and (mostly) loving it. 


08/05/2018 at 01:54 AM

Excellent choice! That's another one I put a good 100 some hours into on release. Hope you like it! Been meaning to replay it again on PC, as I bought it during the big steam sale a little while back. And yea... That was kind of a not great revelation on Octopath. You eventually can switch them out once you get through all their chapters, but usually you end up with a really OP character and have to grind out the rest of your party. If I had better things to do, I would probably have put it down at that point too. And don't get me started on how much BS the post game boss is. One of the most unreasonable things ever... But the song he has is super cool and worth looking up.

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/03/2018 at 12:51 AM

1. I hate how long so many of these damn games are. You brought this up this podcast when discussing Yakuza. Ironically, I'm fine with the way Yakuza is long, cause you can finish the main story much faster than in 30 hours, the side content is just actually good enough to make you want to play it more. My beef is with games whose stories go well above 20 hours, cause as a single-player gamer, that to me is the meat of a game.

2. Menu systems you're forced to spend time in. I realize this is usually something that happens when I play games that aren't really "for me," but inventories like Witcher III are a huge turn off for me because of how massive they are. I just want to play the damn game without worrying about which seven varieties of plant I need to mix to ... I'm getting mad just thinking about this.

3. ANY GAME THAT DOESN'T WORK ON MY PC. I have a GAMING LAPTOP, GTA IV! WHAT IS YOUR MALFUNCTION?! I guess any game that requires you to make or sign into a separate account is a subcomplaint of this complaint, because it exacerbates this iss ... again, my blood pressure is rising, so I'll stop.I bought this thing cause Adobe Suite should work on it, so I should probably get on using that.

Speaking of the devaluation of games, I need to stop buying things for $5 I know I'll never play. I still have sso much bigger of a backlog than I ever did with previous systems.

I completely understand not playing games when you have the time. In my case, being unemployed and looking now, I neglect gaming because I feel like it's a "less legitimate" pastime I should not focus on vs. playing guitar and reading. And yet, I'd probably be less stressed if I just did it. Ironically, I think it may make me more likely to put more in the job search if I took breaks by playing games. I do still want to keep my current exercise/reading/guitar-playing productivity streak going though.

I'm still not entirely sure what this Blockchain thing is. Is it an IoT application? Where can I get coding certified?

I'm typing all this as it comes around 1:20, after deleting all my Twitter likes. I listened to ep 2 of NWP while deleting all my tweets the other day. That was an interesting choice for a sophomore episode.

I trailed off for a second and came in on the "More You Know" jingle. All I have to say is I voted for Kid President.

I prefer vanilla to chocolate ice cream, though I did not catch the context of that. I should probably not scroll through reddit while listening and expect to retain things.

Julian Titus Senior Editor

08/05/2018 at 12:06 AM

Oh no, Joe! Don't tell me you're turning into Patrick and having an existential gaming crisis! If I have to listen to him talk about what a "waste" of time playing video games is on a video game podcast one more time, so help me...

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/05/2018 at 12:30 AM

I literally just finished Doki Doki Literature Club and played both Hat in Time and Gravity Rush 2 a bit yesterday, so I think we're ok. 

Exrian Contributing Writer

08/05/2018 at 10:34 PM

DDLC was a fun time killer. I think it would have been better if I knew absolutely nothing though. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/06/2018 at 12:11 AM

I managed to know mostly nothing, though people telling me it was "weird" and the dialogue definitely foreshadowed things pretty heavily for me. It was an interesting experience and I loved the price tag. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/05/2018 at 12:33 AM

To be honest, though this might seem ironic to some, I think my news addiction is by far the most fruitless one technology has brought about for me.

I already know how I'm voting and I don't need to be plugged in EVERY DAY regarding anything else I'd take action on (unless I start playing stocks, which, who knows), so what am I really doing aside from raising my blood pressure? Does sometimes come in handy for improving my workouts though. 

Julian Titus Senior Editor

08/05/2018 at 12:46 AM

Oh, and as far as NWP episode 2, the three of us had already been podcasting together for about a year on here, so for the few people listening back then it didn't seem like a weird topic, haha!

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/05/2018 at 12:48 AM

Yeah, I saw there was a separate pod called Pixl Talk? I was surprised at how many Pixlbit actually had over the years. I used to listen to PB & Jason pretty regularly. 

Exrian Contributing Writer

08/05/2018 at 10:26 PM

Great podcast guys. Glad to see it getting back on track. I'm loving my Switch Julian. Its perfect for gaming sessions with my daughter around. I typically dont rebuy games but I've made exceptions since I may never beat them if they aren't portable. Currently playing Hollow Knight and its really good. Cant wait for Dead Cells after all the positive buzz on Giantbomb.

Speaking of Giantbomb, do you have any favorite segments to check out? I'm a new Premium member so I'm trying to see the best stuff. Watched all Mario Party Parties and am almost done with the Contradiction play dates. 

I can also attest to the value of video games being so strange. I find myself really interested in many games but tell myself to wait for a sale. Games drop in value so quick and my backlog is so packed that I can afford to do that. I'm the same with movies. I wait til Black Friday for most movies. I will support some smaller games that I really want though like the upcoming Earth Defense Force 5. 

Most importantly I will piggy back off last episodes comment and a few here today about the love for Stage Select. It's an awesome segment and I dont think I look forward to another segment from other podcasts even half as much.

With that said, finally some Stage Select. This week

Stage Select: Pet-Peeves

3. Cutscene BS
There's a few I'm lumping in here. Cutscenes that can't be paused or skipped. I can understand not skipping the first time but any time after should be fair game. No pausing in any game during any cutscene is complete BS.  People have lives and we typically don't want to miss your cutscene.

2. The, "Losing all your gear, stealth mission."
Metroid style is one thing. A small tease of your potential in the first 10 minutes is fine. Losing all your stuff 40 hours into the game to force a stealth mission is unbearable. Especially since its usually an afterthought so you're not getting a great gaming experience like a traditional stealth game.

1. Unrealistic Invisible Walls/Road Blockers
Most of all I hate these. Nathan Drake can climb a mountain 3 seconds after falling off a skyscraper but can't hop an Amazon box in a hallway. Yet nothing compares to Pokemon. Every game has 1 unbelievably dumb road block. The guys who won't let you pass because they are dancing. The guy who won't let you walk by because he dropped something. The old man laying on the floor. If you're going to block my progress please let it be somewhat believable. 

Julian Titus Senior Editor

08/09/2018 at 08:36 PM

So, I have not joined GB premium because I consume all their videos via the YouTube app on my Xbox, and I'm not sure if they have their own app for consoles. I REALLY want to watch 7 Deadly Sims, and I may just end up subscribing for Mass Alex. Any video with Dan and Brad playing Hitman 2016 is pure gold. 

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